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Politics & Government

Stories about politics and government actions

Michigan State Capitol
David Marvin / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Pretty soon, Medicaid recipients in Michigan who are able-bodied may have to choose between finding a job or losing health insurance. That's under a bill the state Senate passed Thursday. Democrats opposed to the bill say it punishes the poor, while supporters say most people on Medicaid already work -- this would give incentive for others to do so.

This Week in Review, Weekend Edition host Rebecca Kruth and senior news analyst Jack Lessenberry discuss the bill, which heads to the House next, and whether Gov. Rick Snyder will sign if it ends up on his desk.


Metro Detroit's "Big Four" regional leaders at the 8 Mile Boulevard Association meeting. From left: Moderator Ron Fournier, Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel, Wayne County Executive Warren Evans, Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan, Oakland County Executive L. Br
Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

Metro Detroit’s divisions over expanding regional transit have only hardened recently.

That was one takeaway from a meeting of the Eight Mile Boulevard Association today. That organization focuses on supporting regional cooperation across the “8 Mile divide” that’s often seen as the iconic dividing line between Detroit and its suburbs.

marijuana
flickr user Dank Depot / http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM

Today is 4/20, a day that holds a special significance for marijuana activists and consumers alike.

Stateside decided to mark the date by talking to Michigan Radio’s capitol bureau chief Rick Pluta about the latest developments in the process to license medical marijuana dispensaries.

Michigan capitol building
Pkay Chelle / FLICKR - http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

It appears legalizing marijuana for recreational use will be on the ballot in November. If the polls are correct, more than 60 percent of voters are okay with recreational use of pot.

Meanwhile, standards for an election recount may be changing after Green Party candidate Jill Stein successfully requested a recount in the state after the 2016 election. Legislation would require a candidate to prove they have a reasonable chance at winning before getting a recount.

michigan state capitol
Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

 

It's time to put people over party. 

That's the idea driving young legislators across the country to group together in a bipartisan way, forming caucuses as a part of the Millennial Action Project's State Future Caucus Network for lawmakers under age 40 who want to govern in a different way. 

Abdul El-Sayed
Bridge Magazine

The state says now is not the time to rule on whether a candidate for governor is eligible to run.  

That could mean the question will wait until after Democratic voters make their choice in the primary.

The state constitution says a candidate for governor must have been a registered voter in Michigan for at least four years before the election.

Democratic hopeful Abdul El-Sayed voted in New York in 2012, and the question is whether that invalidated his Michigan voter registration until he re-registered here in 2016.

Lt. Gov. Brian Calley
Michigan House Republicans

Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley filed petition signatures Tuesday to appear on the Republican primary ballot in August. He’s running to replace Governor Rick Snyder, who cannot run again due to term limits.

Calley says he wants to keep up the work started by Snyder over the past seven years. He says that’s fueled Michigan’s recovery from the Great Recession.

“I’m running to continue this comeback. I’m running to add the next half a million jobs. I’m running to hit new lows in unemployment, and new highs in income growth.”

Library of Congress

One of the cornerstones of President Trump's vision for America is reducing the flow of immigrants into the country. He wants to cut legal immigration by about 500,000 people a year over the next five decades – a 44% reduction. He also touts an immigration system based on merit, but just what does merit mean?

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

The concerns of lower-wage union workers dominated a debate between the Democrats in the governor’s race Thursday night.

The Service Employees International Union sponsored the event in Detroit. Workers questioned Gretchen Whitmer, Shri Thanedar, Abdul El-Sayed, and Bill Cobbs about everything from privatized correctional services, to the lack of union representation for home health care workers.

Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

There was a showdown of sorts at this week’s Democratic Endorsement Convention. Young progressive activists are demanding more say in the party that’s been controlled to a great degree by labor unions. The key race of the convention was symbolic of the divide. 

Images Money / FLICKR - http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

Taxes are due tomorrow, so if you haven’t filed your income taxes by now, you are, quite literally, waiting until the eleventh hour.

Here’s something to chew on as we count down to tomorrow’s deadline: most of us don’t know how much we actually pay Uncle Sam.

New research from Michigan State University finds a huge percentage of us think we pay more federal taxes than we actually do.

Gregory Varnum / FLICKR - http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

Thousands of Michigan Democrats packed into the Cobo Center on Sunday for their endorsement convention, a day that had some rowdy and raucous moments.

Zoe Clark and Rick Pluta, co-hosts of Michigan Radio’s It’s Just Politics, joined Stateside to discuss what the convention’s attendance suggests about Democratic engagement in November, how Dana Nessel nabbed the party endorsement for attorney general, and the shape of the governor’s race.

Flint water bottle station
Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Flint’s mayor is talking about “legal options” after an unsuccessful meeting with Governor Snyder about restarting bottled water distribution.

Update, Friday, April 27 at 10:40 a.m.:

On Thursday, Michigan Board of Canvassers approved the petition to place the marijuana legalization initiative on the November ballot.

House Speaker Tom Leonard says he doesn't foresee the Legislature adopting the measure in the next 40 days. 

"There is not much support it in the caucus," he said. "I do not personally support it, so I think this something that ultimately voters are going to have to decide.”

Original story from Monday, April 23:

Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

Democrats want Dana Nessel as their candidate for state attorney general in 2018. The party held its endorsement convention Sunday. Thousands gathered to vote on who should be on the ballot.

It was at times a bitter race, but former U.S. Attorney Pat Miles conceded to Nessel. Nessel is one of the Michigan attorneys who fought for gay marriage rights and won at the U.S. Supreme Court.

Miles went into the convention with organized labor’s endorsement – which usually means victory. But Nessel’s progressive platform, with nods from LGBTQ and marijuana groups won the day.

The Cobo Center in Detroit
Richard Landskroener / Wikimedia Commons

Michigan Democrats will gather at the Cobo Center in Detroit on Sunday for their party's state endorsement convention. These conventions are generally pretty drama-free, but this one could be different.

This Week in Review, Weekend Edition host Rebecca Kruth and senior news analyst Jack Lessenberry talk about the bitter race between Dana Nessel and Patrick Miles, who are both seeking the nomination for Michigan's next attorney general.


A very large black bear
Oswold's Bear Ranch

The Michigan Legislature is considering bills that would allow both zoos and other facilities to breed large animals, like bears, tigers, or lions.

But the Detroit Zoo says only zoos can keep both large carnivores and the public safe. From its statement:

Abdul El-Sayed
Bridge Magazine

Abdul El-Sayed shows no sign of backing away from a feud with Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan over the city’s building demolitions program.

The Democratic candidate for governor again slammed the program in a statement Friday, capping several days of verbal sparring with Duggan’s office. The back-and-forth followed El-Sayed’s appearance on Michigan Radio’s Stateside this week, when he said Detroit’s sweeping demolition blitz under Duggan was “poisoning kids with lead up until this year.”

Stateside 4.13.2018

Apr 13, 2018

Today on Stateside, a pipeline safety advisor says Gov. Snyder's Line 5 tunnel idea just "kicks the can down the road." And, NAFTA or no, University of Michigan models show the state can "withstand a shock from international trade." Also today, we hear from Shri Thanedar as we continue checking in with the 2018 gubernatorial candidates.

Chief National Guard Bureau / FLICKR - http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

Governor Snyder has decided the water in Flint is safe enough to end bottled water distribution, although the state will continue to distribute water filters to residents.

The Democrats are also holding an endorsement convention this weekend in Detroit. The most hotly contested race is for attorney general. Three Democrats – Pat Miles, Dana Nessel, and William Noakes – are running for the party nomination.

Shri Thanedar
Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

This week, Stateside has been talking to the Democrats running for their party’s nomination for governor.

Shri Thanedar is an Ann Arbor businessman who is primarily self-funding his campaign, and he joined Stateside’s Lester Graham to discuss his stance on the issues, as well as the latest political controversies.

a frame from the "shady schuette" ad with bill schuette in sunglasses
Calley Continues Comeback / YouTube

An attack ad against Bill Schuette is full of false statements according to Bridge Magazine’s Truth Squad. Schuette is a Republican candidate for governor. The ad comes from a Super PAC supporting one of his Republican opponents. We talked with the reporter behind the Truth Squad report.

profile shot of Gretchen Whitmer
Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy, University of Michigan / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Former state Senate Democratic leader Gretchen Whitmer filed petition signatures today to get her name on the August primary ballot as a candidate for governor.

Whitmer is running on her experience as a legislator in the House and Senate. She also says she’s not happy with the cutthroat turn political campaigns in both parties have taken.

Today on Stateside, a professor from Michigan State University explains the disconnect between the university's Board of Trustees and its community. And, we continue our check-ins with the 2018 gubernatorial candidates. Today we hear from Gretchen Whitmer.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Two state lawmakers are asking Michigan’s attorney general to intervene in the decision to end bottled water distribution in Flint.

President Roosevelt delivering Fireside Chat #6. September 30, 1934
FDR Presidential Library & Museum

Seventy-three years ago today, America was plunged into mourning.

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the longest-serving president in U.S. history, died this day in 1945.

profile shot of Gretchen Whitmer
Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy, University of Michigan / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Election season in Michigan is heating up, even if the weather isn’t. With four months before the August primaries, and a state Democratic convention this weekend, Stateside decided it was a good time to check in with the 2018 gubernatorial candidates.

This is Apricot. She's a Vizsla/Pit mix up for adoption at Detroit Dog Rescue.
Courtesy of Detroit Dog Rescue

No bans on pit bulls allowed, says the Michigan Senate.

The chamber voted 22-13 on Thursday to prohibit local governments from dictating breed-specific regulations on dogs. The legislation will benefit canines that are perceived as more aggressive - mostly pit bulls, but also Rottweilers, German Shepherds, and Cane Corsos.

About 30 local governments have some form of breed-specific ordinances, which supporters of the bill say encroaches on dog owners' property rights.

dr abdul el sayed behind a desk
Abdul for Michigan

This week, Stateside is interviewing the Democratic candidates for governor ahead of their party’s 2018 State Endorsement Convention. The gubernatorial candidates will face off in the August primaries.

Abdul El-Sayed is the former director of the Detroit Health Department. His campaign has been a little bumpy - late last month, he asked a court to rule if he's eligible to run after some elections law experts claimed he might not be.

Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley is running for governor. But first, he has to get the Republican nomination. His campaign is running a video ad that Bridge Magazine’s Truth Squad finds stretches the truth a bit. 

Let’s go straight to the video. Here’s the main point Brian Calley wants to make to voters.

“I was the driving force behind historic tax cuts and cast the deciding vote to balance Michigan’s budget. What happened? Half a million jobs have been created. We hit the lowest unemployment rate in seventeen years.”

The Truth Squad’s Ted Roelofs says Calley is taking a lot of credit in this ad.

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